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Personality Is A Mask Worn By The Essence

Wednesday, May 15, 2019
By Osho

Personality as such is false. The word 'personality' has to be understood. It comes from 'persona'; persona means a mask. In ancient Greek drama the actors used to wear masks; those masks were called persona -- persona because the sound was coming from behind the mask. 'Sona' means sound. The masks were apparent to the audience and from behind the mask the sound was coming. From that word 'persona' has come the word 'personality'.

All personality is false. Good personality, bad personality, the personality of a sinner and the personality of a saint -- all are false. You can wear a beautiful mask or an ugly mask, it doesn't make any difference.

The real thing is your essence.

Personality is also a necessary part of growth. It is like if you catch hold of a fish in the sea and you throw it on the shore; the fish jumps back into the sea. Now for the first time it will know that it has always lived in the sea; for the first time it will know that "The sea is my life." Up to now, before it was caught and thrown on the shore, it may not have ever thought of the sea at all; it may have been utterly oblivious of the sea. To know something, first you have to lose it.

To be aware of paradise, first you have to lose it. Unless it is lost AND regained you will not understand the beauty of it.

Adam and Eve had to lose the Garden of Eden; that is part of natural growth. Only Adam leaving the beautiful Garden of God can become a Christ one day -- he can come back. Adam leaving Eden is just like the fish being caught and thrown on the shore and Jesus is the fish jumping back into the sea.

The primitive people cannot become enlightened. They are beautiful, spontaneous, natural, but utterly unaware of what they are; they don't have any awareness. They live joyously but their joy is unconscious. First they have to lose it. They have to become civilized, educated, knowledgeable; they have to become a culture, a civilization, a religion. They have to lose all their spontaneity, they have to forget all about their essence, and then suddenly one day they start missing it. It is bound to happen.

The more civilized a country is, the more is the feeling of meaninglessness. The backward countries still don't have that feeling, they can't have. To have that feeling of inner emptiness, meaninglessness, absurdity, one has to become very civilized.

Hence I am all in favor of science, because it helps the fish to be thrown on the shore. And once on the hot shore, in the hot sand, the fish starts feeling thirsty. It had never felt thirsty before. For the first time it misses the ocean around, the coolness, the life-giving waters. It is dying.

Do you know that primitive people don't go mad? It is only the civilized man's privilege. Primitive people don't commit suicide; again it is the civilized man's privilege.

But to feel that life is utterly meaningless is to be on a crossroads: either you choose suicide or you choose sannyas; either you choose madness or you choose meditation. It is a great turning-point!

Abridged from Be Still and Know/ Osho Times International/CourtesyOsho International Foundation/

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